Lonely Planet Writer

Why setting time aside on 'National Plan for Vacation Day' is a good idea

Have you already started to let your New Year’s resolutions slide? Then 30 January is the perfect day to make sure that at least your 2018 travel goals will be realized, by setting aside time to plan a year’s worth of amazing holidays.

Take 30 January to plan your vacations for the year. Image by Westend61/Getty Images

Tuesday has been declared “National Plan for Vacation Day” by the US-based Project: Time Off, an organization that aims to get Americans to take back their lost vacation time. In 2016, more than half of American workers left a total of 662 million vacation days unused, something Project: Time Off is trying to change. The group believes that vacations are important to our well-being, and the new “holiday” is designed to help Americans to plan ahead to ensure that they make the most of their vacation days.

According to Project: Time Off, 51% of Americans skip out on planning in advance for vacation. To combat this, the group has launched a new Vacation Planning Tool that will help you get organized. It starts by helping determine just how much time off you earn, and any holidays you might get off from work. From there, you can co-ordinate calendars with family and friends and then export your calendar so you can head to work and book your time off.

To join in on the festivities, Airbnb is also announcing a contest to mark the holiday on 30 January. The 662nd person to book a trip with the company’s new Pay Less Up Front feature will get an Airbnb coupon for $4,999 – meaning you will have a financial bonus when it comes to booking your vacations. Alternatively, you can enter by sending an email to paylessupfront@gmail.com with the subject line “Pay Less Up Front Sweepstakes” to enter.

Get some travel inspiration for 2018. Image by ©Michaela Potterbaum/Lonely Planet

Once you’ve decided when you are taking a holiday, it’s time to start planning where – and there are plenty of resources to get you inspired. World travellers can check out Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travelist, which lays out the 500 best places to see around the world, or Where to Go When, which will help you decide the best time to go to destinations around the world. If you’re looking to head out on your own, why not try the Solo Travel Handbook, which gives you all the info your need to plan a trip, like planning an itinerary, setting a budget, finding flights and accommodation and more.